Continuing Education at Centenary

Adult Education versus Continuing Education

The terms "adult education" and "continuing education" are often used interchangeably though they have slightly different meanings.

Adult education refers to education provided to people over the age of 18. Most post-secondary institutions consider adult education as programs designed for men and women over the age of 22. Those younger are known as traditional undergraduate students.

Adult education also refers to courses designed for people who are interested in learning English as a Second Language (ESL) or completing courses to meet high school diploma requirements (GED).

Continuing education refers to any type of post-secondary adult education program taken to obtain certifications, maintain a license, or complete a college degree. Continuing education is similar to adult learning programs since it is intended for adult learners.

Some programs falling under this definition include degree credit courses for non-traditional students, vocational training, non-credit-granting courses taken for personal enrichment, experiential learning, and online distance learning.

Continuing Education offered by Centenary:

The Benefits of Continuing Education Programs

Many colleges like Centenary College provide continuing education programs that cater the unique needs of non-traditional adult students.

Colleges and universities that provide continuing education recognize most adult students have jobs and cannot attend school full time, or they have children and this requires alternative class times such as evenings or week-ends.

Continuing education courses typically include conventional classroom lectures and/or distance online learning.

Students who enroll for these courses often opt for classroom lectures even though online adult education classes carry just as much merit and academic rigor as classroom-based courses.

A third option gaining popularity with non-traditional adult students is the blended or hybrid course which combines the best features of both delivery methods.

Continuing Education is a Necessity for Success

Over the last decade, the foundation of the U.S. economy has experienced a profound shift which has transformed the basis of competitive advantage.  We now find ourselves living in a knowledge economy—one in which knowledge is the key resource.

In a knowledge economy, building and maintaining a successful career means fostering a personal philosophy of continuing adult education. Institutions like Centenary College and other adult schools are in a unique position to serve the needs of a knowledge economy.

Many corporations also acknowledge the advantages of continuing education for adults. One demonstration of this is the growth of dedicated partnerships with institutions of higher learning. The best continuing education programs are those that share a common commitment to the needs of adult learners.

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